Byline: David Moin / With contributions by Anamaria Wilson
NEW YORK--Even without all the fanfare and flash of a normal fashion week, retailers attending the New York designer showings liked what they saw, and it wasn't just the fashion. It was the way designers responded to the crisis that befell the city and country the week before, working amid the most trying circumstances. "It's awfully hard to evaluate this season because of what has been going on in New York," said Kal Ruttenstein, senior vice president of fashion direction, Bloomingdale's. "But considering what they went through--bad fabric deliveries and the mayhem with the scheduling--American designers were very resourceful. You have to call it a strong season. Nobody just sat back. Everybody did what they could to make exciting fashion happen." "Designers did the appropriate thing in doing smaller presentations for press and retailers," said Peter Rizzo, president of Bergdorf Goodman. "You could feel the unity in the city and in our industry as well. Everybody is enormously pained by this, and trying to carry on. In this business, we are not dealing with life-crisis issues. You are dealing with apparel and, under these circumstances, it's not always an easy thing--shopping for a suit, planning a vacation. The designers were all very, very keenly sensitive to it." "This was a very touching week," added Jaqui Lividini, Saks Fifth Avenue's senior vice president of fashion merchandising. "Michael Kors said some beautiful things, about how proud he was to be an American, and a New Yorker. Ralph did the same thing. Oscar greeted everybody after the show and spoke to everyone. Those moments brought a whole new dimension to the industry. The fashion shows were very pared down. In light of the current events, the spareness was also touching, and partly because of that, you really did get to see and appreciate the clothes." For Julie Gilhart, vice president of fashion merchandising at Barneys New York, the shows struck just the right tone. "The presentations were so heartfelt, and they were put together in such a sensitive way." She also found that the muted presentations made it even more personal. "The presentations were edited down to what were really important pieces. I thought everything was done with the minimal amount of hype and the maximum amount of thought to what the retailers actually needed." As far as the major trends, there was what Saks termed "globe-trotter, ethnic diversity," while Bloomingdale's labeled the look "sophisticated gypsy," with peasant touches, blousy looks, tiered skirts, embroidery and beadings. Other trends were soft tailoring in suits with fishtail or asymmetric hemlines and jersey dresses with new kinds of seaming. The major designers who did show generally came through, Ruttenstein said. "The standout collection of the period was Ralph Lauren," who showed sophisticated and innocent gypsy looks, with off-the-shoulder blouses, tiered skirts, fringed shawls, and a white and cream palette. Ruttenstein also cited Calvin Klein's beautifully seamed jersey dresses; Marc Jacobs's dresses with a lot of movement, ruffles and patchwork colors; Max Azria for BCBG's young, spirited fashion-forward collection; Anna Sui's "innocent" gypsy look with knee socks and a touch of Victoriana; Donna Karan's sculptural dresses and cheerful bright prints for evening and full skirts, "the newest silhouette of the season." With Ralph Lauren concluding the major showing, "the mood turned from negative and fearful, to positive and hopeful," Ruttenstein said. "The way he came out and spoke to the audience, telling people that he believes in heroes and 'you have to dream,' was moving." Two young designers that Bloomingdale's plan to sell for the first time next spring are Behnaz Sarafpour and Christine Ganeaux. The store also singled out another young designer line, Pierre Carrilero for Pierrot. Bloomingdale's recently began selling the label and plans to go forward with it. Lividini called Lauren's collection "head-to-toe perfection." She also cited Badgely Mischka's embroideries and beading and the simple elegance of Narciso Rodriguez. Other strong collections cited by Saks included Bill Blass, Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors and Carolina Herrera.
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews
@prada is introducing a new project at its men’s fall 2018 show this Sunday: “Prada Invites.” The fashion house invited four celebrated creative minds – @ronanaerwanbouroullec, Konstantin Grcic, @herzogdemeuron and @rem.koolhaas – to each create a unique item with its iconic nylon material. The designs will be unveiled on the runway show, which will take place at the company’s warehouse in Viale Ortles 25. #wwdfashion #mfwm (📷: @martinocarrera)
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion